The Company of Wolves

Wed 15th – Mon 27th August 2012


Mel Melville

at 22:45 on 17th Aug 2012



If you are familiar with the story of Little Red Riding Hood and would like to intensify your Edinburgh experience with a weird and wonderful performance, then I very much recommend this show. After being encouraged to sit on the blankets surrounding the stage for a more intimate experience, you are provided with a blank piece of card and asked to portray your deepest heart’s desire using the arts and crafts equipment provided. Admittedly, this is a strange request and yet it seemed fitting with the rest of the production as it led you along the path of acceptance. The show starts with a boy with a guitar and a sweet voice - innocence is depicted well here. As the story progresses, this innocence is replaced with fear, passion, violence and plenty of desire.

The director (Kate Baiden) adapted the short story by Angela Carter in an intriguing light. You are taken on a journey that shocks and confuses you and there are plenty of musical interjections that add a sense of peculiarity. A seductive wolf and a harrowing hunter are played by Luke Shepherd, who deserves to be recognised for his exceptional acting. Each character is believable and the cast together captivate the audience. The grandma to grandchild relationship is sometimes adorable yet occasionally forbidding. Grandma tells a few bedtime stories which are acted out by the small cast using masks, and these stories help expose the real story.

The lighting is always appropriate and the music is simply joyful. At times, the Grandma (Johanna Clarke) may be seen to drag on but this is simply the nature of her character. I wasn’t all together sure of the age of the child (Bekah Lucking) but for once, I didn’t find a young lady acting like as child even slightly annoying –it’s a difficult task for many.

The start of the show is slightly slow, and the physical theatre and intimacy may in many people’s opinions appear too far-fetched, but for an open minded audience member, it is a real treat. By the end of the show I had fallen into an enchanting world of creativity and didn’t want it all to end.


Ellen Smyth

at 10:02 on 18th Aug 2012



This 3Bugs Theatre production is a highly enjoyable, intimate, and interactive theatre piece. ‘Company of Wolves’ took me by surprise. The last question I expected when I bounded up the stairs at C Venues – C eca was: what is your heart's desire? And so, this is how I came to be sitting on a floor swapping glitter glue for coloured pipe cleaners and drawing my inner desires on a blank piece of paper on a Friday night.

If you are familiar with Angela Carter's ‘The Bloody Chamber’ - a collection of short stories based on traditional fairytales – then you might expect dark adult themes of sex, violence and seduction. But even if you’re not, the title is in itself a threatening clue. ‘The Company of Wolves’ touches on base, visceral emotions but combines this with beautiful folk music and childlike storytelling.

The venue is perfect. A darkened, blank canvas, it is simply decorated (with blankets and berries on the floor.) If you’re prepared to get on board with the whole teddy bear's picnic vibe then I’d highly recommend pulling up some floor and enjoying being up close and personal with the action. Why? Because the acting is phenomenal. Christina Jones and co-director Kate Baiden have done a fabulous job. From skulking wolves, to expressive masks and fabulous lighting, this is a well developed, interactive play. There is something for everyone here, with the actors deftly switching between perfect embodiment of naivety and danger.

‘Company of Wolves’ is enchanting, spellbinding and somehow soothing. Best enjoyed on the floor, because it’s all the better for grandma to see you with m’dear.


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